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Unraveling Recent Crustal Movements of The Marginal Gangetic Alluvial Plains:

A Computer Aided Geomorphic Approach

MISHRA M N

THE MARGINAL GANGETIC ALLUVIAL PLAINS


STUDY AREA ~ 6000 sq km

STUDY AREA

INDIA

RAVINOUS TRACT

PENINSULAR UPLAND

AMPHETHEATRE headed DEEP GULLIES

KANKAR HORIZONS

HEIGHT OF THE SCARP 25 m APPROX.

INITIATION OF BADLAND TOPOGRAPHY IN CLAYEY LITHOLOGY

MORPHOTECTONIS & RECENT CRUSTAL MOVEMENTS


STUDY OF RECENT OR QUATERNARY CRUSTAL MOVEMENTS INVOLVES A THOROUGH APPRAISAL OF MORPHOTECTONCS

MORPHOTECTONICS IS GEOMORPHOLOGY OF LANDFORMS WHOSE CHARACTER IS RELATED TO RECENT TECTONICS

ELEMENTS OF MORPHOTECTONICS
FAULTING, TILTING & FOLDING OF QUATERNARY DEPOSITS
SEPARATION OF RIVER TERRACES LACAL VARIATIONS IN RIVER GRADIENT AND INCISION SECTORIAL DEVELOPMENT OF TERRACES OFF-SETTING OF RIVERS ACROSS LINEAMENTS WARPING OF PLANATION SURFACES DIFFERENTIAL ACCCUMULATION OF YOUNG SEDIMENTS SEISMOTECTONICS

THE PRESENT STUDY BLENDS

TRADITIONAL GEOMORPHIC TECHNIQUE & COMPUTER-AIDED ANALYTICAL TECHNIQUE

TRADITIONAL GEOMORPHIC TECHNIQUE


SYSTEMATIC GEOLOGIC & GEOMORPHIC MAPPING STUDY OF MULTI-DATE TOPOSHEETS, AERIAL PHOTOS & IMAGES (IRS LIII) (PERIODS 1922, 1952, 1976, 1990)

COMPUTER-AIDED ANALYTICAL TECHNIQUE


EXTREME FLATNESS OF THE TERRAIN NECESSITATED THE USE OF THE COMPUTER FOR THE STUDY OF RELIEF & SLOPES DTM & CONTOUR MAP (1m) WERE GENERATED BY DIGITIZING SPOT HEIGHTS

ADVANTAGES OF COMPUTER-AIDED TECHNIQUE


THE STUDY HELPED IN UNDERSTANDING
THE BASEMENT TECTONICS

MORPHOLOGIC RESPONSE OF RIVERS TO ACTIVE TECTONIC DEFORMATION


UNRAVELING LATE QUATERNARY HISTORY OF THE ALLUVIAL TRACT

GEOMORPHIC MAP OF THE WESTERN MGAP


T2 178-145 m, T1 142-132 m, T0 135-125 m

INSET

THICKNESS OF THE ALLUVIUM 50 TO 250m LARGE ELEVATION DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE VARIOUS SURFACES & DEEP INCISION OF RIVERS WIDTH OF THE RAVINOUS TRACT AND PRESENCE/ABSENCE OF EROSIONAL TERRACES

1st CYCLE OF GULLYING

2nd CYCLE OF GULLYING

A FLIGHT OF TERRACES

MEANDERS ARE UP- SLOPE

STRUCTURAL MAP

CONTOUR VALUES IN m asl

CONTOUR INTERVAL 2m

DEEP INCISION & ABSENCE OF TERRACES SEEN AT THE DOMAL FEATURE


SLOPES OF THE REGIONAL UPLAND SURFACE ARE AWAY FROM THE CHAMBAL DUE TO SYNFORMAL DOWNWARPS & ANTIFORMAL UPWARPS DEATH OF THE PC NOTE WIDTH OF THE RAVINOUS TRACT ALONG RIVERS WIDTH OF CATCHMENT & LENGTH OF TRIBUTARY STREAMS

3-D TERRAIN MODEL OF THE ALLUVIAL TRACT

CHAMBAL RIVER

LENGTH OF TRIBUTARIES

PALAEOCHANNEL IS NOT INCISED THE ELEVATION DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE CHAMBAL & THE PALAEOCHANNEL IS 55 m

PALAEOCHANNEL

DHAULPUR

WELL-DEFINED PALAEOBANKS, BLUFFS, AND WELL-PRESERVED MEANDERS ALONG THE ABANDONED VALLEY INDICATE RECENCY OF ABANDONMENT PALAEOCHNNEL IS DEVOID OF INCISION, GULLYING, CONTROLS OF LINEAMENTS IN CONTRAST TO THE MODERN DRAINAGE; HENCE IT PREDATES THESE EVENTS

LINEAMENT MAP OF THE WESTERN MGAP

ACTIVITY ALONG LINEAMENTS

EPICENTRE OF EARTHQUAKE OFF-SETTING OF RIVERS st FASTER HEADWARD EROSION ALONG THEM OF 1 SEPTEMBER, 1994 4.8 MAGNITUDE ON MSK TILTING OF QUATERNARY STRATA SCALE SEISMICITY DIFFERENTIAL BLOCK MOVEMENTS

EVIDENCE OF BLOCK MOVEMENT ALONG LINEAMENTS

ELEVATION OF POINT BARS w.r.t. 120 m asl SEGMENTAL GRADIENT CHANGES IN RIVER COURSE (27 to 9 cm/km) ELEVATION OF POINT BARS & T1-TERRACE IS NOT WHAT THE CHANNELGRADIENT WOULD SUGGEST DEEP INCISION & ABSENCE OF TERRACES ON UPTHROWN BLOCKS THE THALWEG IS INCISED WITHIN THE POINT BARS, WHICH SHOW MORE THAN ONE LEVEL WITH BREAK IN SLOPE

EVIDENCE OF BLOCK MOVEMENT ALONG LINEAMENTS

SEGMENTAL GRADIENT CHANGES IN RIVER COURSE (27 to 9 cm/km) ELEVATION OF POINT BARS & T1-TERRACE IS NOT WHAT THE CHANNELGRADIENT WOULD SUGGEST DEEP INCISION & ABSENCE OF TERRACES ON UPTHROWN BLOCKS THE THALWEG IS INCISED WITHIN THE POINT BARS, WHICH SHOW MORE THAN ONE LEVEL WITH BREAK IN SLOPE

MORPHOTECTONIC EVOLUTION
DEEP INCISION WITH LITTLE LATERAL MIGRATION

REJUVENATION ON A REGIONAL SCALE WITH LARGE SUDDEN AND RAPID LOWERING OF BASELEVEL

BREAKDOWN OF METASTABLE HYDROLOGIC EQULIBRIUM

GULLYING & DEVELOPMENT OF BADLAND TOPOGRAPHY

TWO DISTINCT EPISODES OF NEOTECTONIC ACTIVITY CAN BE INTERPRETED

EPISODE I
THE RIVERS WERE UNINCISED AND MORE MEANDERING TYPE THE PALAEOCHANNEL & THE CHAMBAL HAD THE SAME BASELEVEL SUDDEN REJUVENATION BLOCK UPLIFT WARPING OF ALLUVIAL SURFACE REVERSAL OF SLOPE DEMISE OF THE PALAEOCHANNEL BEFORE IT COULD INCISE ITSELF

REJUVENATION DISPLACEMENT OF RIVERS FROM METASTABLE HYDROLOGIC EQUILIBRIUM GULLYING BADLAND TOPOGRAPHY

EPISODE II
INITIAL CYCLE OF RAPID UPLIFT & INCISION EXPERIENCED A RELATIVE QUIECENCE RIVERS ENGAGED IN LATERAL MIGRATION, FORMING T1-EROSIONAL SURFACE THE 2nd CYCLE OF UPLIFT CAUSED ABANDONMENT OF T1-SURFACE AND FORMATION OF CUT-OFF MEANDERS

THIS CYCLE WITNESSED SEVERAL SHORT PULSES OF UPLIFT CAUSING THE DEVELOPMENT OF A FLIGHT OF TERRACES

PENINSULAR UPLANDS
CHAMBAL YAMUNA GANGA

HIMALAYAN THRUST SHEET LOADING

GHAGHRA

TIBET

CRUSTAL REBOUND

FLEXED LITHOSPHERE

REGIONAL IMPLICATIONS
TECTONISM & UPLIFT OF THE ARAVALLIS DURING HOLOCENE & HISTORIC PERIOD DRASTIC CHANGES IN DRAINAGE NETWORK OF NW INDIA Geoarchaeological evidence during pre-historic & the historic period, the Yamuna (& the Sutlej), having a southwesterly course shared their waters with the mighty Saraswati on the banks of which the Vedic civilization flourished

A minor tributary of the Chambal (the modern Yamuna), through rapid head-ward erosion robbed the waters of the then southwesterly flowing Yamuna. The Sutlej also changed its course due to the effect of tectonic activity Betrayal by the Yamuna & the Sutlej caused the demise of the Saraswati and the consequent decline of the Vedic civilization

Tectonic activity leading to the warping of the alluvial tract, rejuvenation of the terrain, deep incision and gullying appears to have a close link with the uplift of the Aravallis during the Holocene

DATING, GEOARCHAEOLOGICAL & HISTORICAL EVIDENCES


Dating by Singh (1997) suggests two major episodes of neotectonic activity in western MGAP at 9000 years and 5000 years B.P. Historical evidence a major part of the ravinous tract has indeed appeared during the historic past The entrenched cut-off meanders contain innumerable villages, castles, forts, temples and their remains on their banks in the ravines Legend has it that these were once on the banks of the rivers

Ruins of settlements, broken potteries including PWG, 5th & 11th century idols (broken) of Hindu deities and Lord Buddha, ruins of 11th century temples etc. dot the ravine landscape Excavations by the ASI suggest that the area has been inhabited by the people since the Mahabharata Period The town of Dhaulpur has been shifted from the bank of the Chambal to its present position during the mediaeval period These evidences suggest that the tectonic movements responsible for the topographic rejuvenation in this part of the Ganga Plains must have taken place during the past few millennia of the Late Holocene

5th Century

5th century

11th century

An 11th century temple with a part of its base eroded away by the onslaught of ravines

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